Carey's Third Negative 8-24-99
The use of sophistry by Darrell has done much to harm his objective. It should cause serious bible students to evaluate whether Darrell is reaching for credibility or standing upon the truth of scripture. This method is totally unnecessary if serious and honest Bible study is desired.
Our debate has focused mainly upon two passages of scripture and the use of interpretation to determine if our resolved statement can be found as authorized by the Bible.
A proper understanding of authority is that which is authorized is allowed, and what is not authorized is not allowed.
Darrell has proven that he cannot abide by authority, even the authority of the rules of this debate, which he himself authored.
Darrell wrote: As far as rules are concerned we will limit the debate to the issues and not personalities.
Carey here: I will make this commitment to those on this list and any other medium in which this debate may be presented. I will not resort to the ugly sophistry that my opponent has chosen to use. I will not call names, or make wild statements, or categorize any group of people or individuals. I have the scriptures to do my speaking and teaching for me. I do not need to come up with all sorts of cute little stories which serve to entertain, but have no useful purpose in this debate.
Darrell wrote: The person in the affirmative must prove that which he affirms:
Carey here: Darrell had his opportunities to prove his argument. Yet he failed to provide even one scripture to support his position. The closest he came to offering anything was from a passage that belonged to the negative position. Even then, the best that Darrell could offer was an "it may be the case" scenario. He also used a passage concerning two named congregations, but had to resort to a six' step plan of reasoning to even suggest something close to a sponsoring church arrangement. The pattern for this reasoning came from the missionary society from the last century. With this kind of reasoning, a church can do anything it wants regardless of scripture.
Darrell is to prove the right of a SPONSORING CHURCH ARRANGEMENT to exist. He could not produce one scripture that showed the existence of a sponsoring church. "It may be the case" is not a solid "THUS SAITH THE LORD"(emp-cs).
Darrell wrote: and the person in the negative must answer the arguments of the affirmative.
Carey here: I answered every argument that Darrell presented with a book, chapter and verse. Where Darrell was unable to provide a single scripture for an "it may be the case", I have provided several examples from scripture as to how Paul was supported and how churches financed the work of evangelism. None of the examples even hinted at a sponsoring church arrangement.
Therefore, since the scriptures give us an example of how evangelism was financed, we see that there is no authority to act upon the silence of scripture to allow such a practice.
If God were to authorize such a practice, there would be scripture teaching all congregations to send their finances to the sponsoring church. But how would we determine the locations of these sponsoring churches? Would we not have to rely upon scripture to give us guidelines on how a sponsoring church was to operate? If we condemn the missionary society, why do many tolerate a sponsoring church arrangement that does exactly the same thing?
Many of our practices are supported or authorized by as few as one single passage of scripture. We all understand Acts 20:7; 1 Cor 16:1-2; Eph 5:19. We teach our doctrines based upon sometimes single passages. (Matt 19:9; 1 Jn 1:5-10; Heb 10:25; Acts 8:37. And we determine in our hearts who we are going to fellowship because of the practice or teaching of someone else. (Rom 16:17-18; 2 John 9-11).
Darrell wrote: Each proposition will be limited to three affirmatives and negatives. The two propositions above will be debated. During each debate it is agreed that no new material will be brought into the third affirmative and negative.
Carey here: Darrell has brought in new affirmative arguments. However if we are flexible as agreed, I guess we should consider these subtopics to the main arguments.
I asked myself why Darrell would change his demeanor and style in the third affirmative from what was offered in the first two affirmatives. The only conclusion that I can imagine is that Darrell has learned that there is no way to defend his position from scripture, and he has to resort to sophistry, name calling, shifting the focus away from himself, and try to discredit his opponent by making false charges.
I feel like Jeremiah (Chap 26:8-15) who upon completing a sermon was taken up and demanded that he be put to death. Like Jeremiah, I can only say that I have presented God's word, and if you feel you must lynch me, you have to answer to God for it. The choice is yours.
Darrell is trying to instill bias, prejudice, hatred, and fear in all the readers in order to cover up the fact that the truth, which he is supposed to present, has eluded him and he cannot bear what God has said through His word.
Darrell's mastery of sophistry has demonstrated many years of practice. Darrell almost had me crying and ready to repent of all the evil that he accused me of. Yet when I knelt and began to pray, I could not think of anything which I taught for which I had to apologize. Like I said, I presented the truth from God's word. I did not leave the boundaries of God's word to assume anything. Neither have I resorted to name calling or any ugly sophistry.
Specific rebuttal of the third affirmative.
Resolved: The Bible authorizes the local church to receive an evangelist's funds from other congregations and send those funds to an evangelist who is laboring in a mission field. This arrangement is referred to a sponsoring church arrangement.
In the third affirmative Darrell wrote:
Carey here: "The churches of Christ salute you". Paul writing to the Romans tells the Romans that the churches with which Paul is associated have expressed concern and gratitude for the Roman church. These are a bunch of individual local churches sending greetings to a local church in Rome.
Darrell: True, but of equal truth is the FACT that all loyal local congregations are parts of the whole, not separate entities from the whole.
Carey here: The individual members of local churches are part of the body of Christ. Christians were added to the Lord's church as they were being saved (Acts 2:47). No congregations were added to their number on that day. No congregations are added to the Lord's universal church, but only souls of those who by obedience, submit to the commands of God. Membership in the universal church is by Divine Adoption. Membership in the local church is by human agreement. Local churches have their own specific identity and work according to scripture. No congregation will stand together in judgement before the throne of God.
Darrell wrote: Was Saul's persecution a persecution of individual Christians only?
None of the scripture referenced by Darrell mentioned local churches in the singular. They mentioned the men and women of THE CHURCH (universal). I will add one more of whom Paul was persecuting. "Saul, Saul, why are you persecuting me? And he[Saul] said, 'who art Thou, Lord?' And He said, 'I am Jesus, whom you are persecuting," (Acts 9:4-5). Christians are baptized into Christ, (not the local church) and added to the body [universal]. (Rom 6:3-6; Gal 3:26-27; Acts 2:47).
Darrell, our difference lies in the understanding of the relationship of the local church to the body of Christ. John 15:5 teaches that individual Christians are a part of Christ, and not the various local churches. Perhaps we can discuss this later in another debate?
Darrell wrote: Make no mistake about it, in this context Paul referred to the universal church! By persecuting individuals Saul persecuted local churches (Acts 9:31), the universal church (Gal. 1:13), Christ himself (Acts 22:7-8), and he was persecuting the way or the faith (Acts 22:4; Gal. 1:23).
Carey here: Darrell's main verse of Saul's persecuting local churches is Acts 9:31.
"So the church throughout all Judea and Galilee and Samaria enjoyed peace, being built up; and going on in the fear of the Lord and in the comfort of the Holy Spirit, it continued to increase."
Darrell, the "church throughout all Judea and Galilee and Samaria" hardly qualifies for a local church.
Now, members of the various local churches were persecuted, but only because they were members of the Lord's body, and not because they we members of the Damascus Church of Christ, or any other local church of Christ. Since individual Christians were persecuted, we can see that local congregations were affected. Only because of the association and fellowship of individual Christians working collectively, we might infer that a local church is a part of the universal church.
If Darrell would remove the denominational concept that local churches are a part of the body, he will see that individual Christians are the church. Local churches are only a group of individuals who have agreed to meet together to teach and edify and support one another, and do God's will collectively.
Darrell wrote: But my friend in judgment the Lord will look at what we could have done but failed to do.
Carey here: We will be judged by what we actually did, but the basis for our judgement is based upon what we have done with His words. John 12:48. His words (Jesus' and the Holy Spirit's) will judge us. His word is one of the books that will be opened (Rev 20:12) at the judgement. Darrell, you seem to forget that we are limited by God's word and that we should not go beyond His words or doctrine (2 Jn 9; 1 Cor 4:6; Rev 22:18-19).
The grand scheme of God demands that each and every Christian evangelize as many as possible. When you mentioned "cooperating together allows many brethren to work at world evangelism at the same time they are evangelizing their local areas", you spoke correctly. The local church is the only entity by which this cooperation can take place. God does not allow any organization greater than the local church or smaller than the universal church according to scripture. Does this mean that they are not good and worthy objectives? No! Does this mean that we can use any method whatsoever to accomplish such a worthy goal? No!
Darrell wrote: So which is it Carey? Was the church in Philippi the only one to support Paul or were other churches supporting him? Which way do you want to argue this thing? In your first negative the meat of your case rested on the word "only" (Phil. 4:15). But as is evident, this word "only" destroys your entire case because, as you clearly point out above, other churches were also supporting Paul AT THE SAME TIME. Therefore, "only" can only be understood in terms of the sponsor arrangement as noted in the debate proposition.
Carey here: Once again, Darrell twists things around. Notice his capitalization. Here is the text from the first affirmative.
Darrell wrote: It can not be affirmed that each of the churches supporting Paul sent his wages directly to him. It may be the case that the church in Philippi was serving as Paul's sponsoring congregation.
Carey here: It was in response to this statement that I showed that the church in Philippi was the only church to support Paul AT THE BEGINNING (emp-cs). As I proceeded into the second negative, I listed all examples of support of evangelists. As 2 Cor 11:8 was written, obviously other churches had decided to support Paul also. Each answer was correct from the position in the various arguments. If I ask "How far I would have to travel to get to Atlanta. Ga." to three different people in three different cities along the route, I would get three different answers, but each answer would be correct from where they were at that time. Darrell is trying to teach that these other churches sent wages to Paul via Philippi. Darrell only offers an "it may be the case".
In establishing a principle of the unnecessary manner in producing an "it may be the case" argument I wrote:
1. It can not be affirmed that each of the churches met on the first day of the week. It may be the case that only the Troas church did so. Thus the first day of the week is not binding upon us today.
Darrell wrote: By using the reasoning behind your doctrine each local church must go to Troas to worship each Lord's day.
Carey here: Darrell once again misunderstands the whole point of this argument and twists statements to indicate a teaching that was not intended or even parallel.
Every one who reads this debate has a clear understanding that Acts 20:7 teaches us the example of the Apostles and early church assembling on the first day of the week to worship God by the breaking of bread (Lord's supper). There is no implication by the statement that I am suggesting that every church has to go to Troas. The implication is that if anyone suggest Saturday or Thursday to observe the Lord's supper, we have book, chapter, and verse to provide an example and thus that example limits us to observance ONLY (emp-cs) upon the first day of the week. Had this one verse not been recorded, we each would be at liberty to determine when we came together for the purpose of breaking bread.
But I wonder where Darrell gets his authority for meeting on the first day of the week? Or, does Darrell need authority for meeting on the first day of the week? Does Darrell believe in book, chapter and verse authority?
Carey 2. It can not be affirmed that musical instruments were not used. It may be the case that they were used in addition to the singing, but the writers just left out mention of such, therefore we may use them.
Darrell wrote: We are not debating addition to the scriptures as would be the case with mechanical instruments of music in worship. No, we are discussing the "debit and credit" system used at Philippi. Let's not compare apples with oranges.
Carey Here: Since Darrell has not produced a single scripture mentioning the sponsoring church, this debate has to be about an addition to the scriptures. Was this not the same argument offered by the missionary society? Read Earl West's "In Search Of The Ancient Order" to see how the supporters of the ACMS argued and treated the faithful of God.
Darrell also tells us what we are discussing. I agree that the "debit and credit" system was used at Philippi. The scripture supports the FACT that Philippi supported Paul. The scriptures DO NOT (emp-cs) support the POSSIBILITY (emp-cs) that other churches sent funds to Philippi for Paul's support.
Carey 3. It can not be affirmed that Noah made the ark completely out of gopher wood. It may be the case that parts of it were of some other material because the scripture does not tell us specifically.
Darrell: Another apples and oranges illustration. Now how did Noah get the ark built? Did he do it alone or did he cooperate with his sons and maybe even use some heathens to build the ark? Now these questions would be more in line with our discussion.
Carey here: I kind of expected this type of answer. Had Darrell quoted Gen 6:22, the answer was obvious. But Darrell has offered an addition to what the scriptures teach.
Darrell has had to resort to twisting statements and scripture to support his teaching. If Darrell would handle the Bible properly, he would not be so confusing.
Later on in the third affirmative:
Darrell wrote: The word is figuratively referred to as seed (Luke 8:11). Which is planted into figurative soil, the hearts of men (Luke 8; Matt 13). Was Paul's support literal or figurative? It was literal. But how could it be literal if either part of the giving and receiving were figurative? The argument answers itself.
Carey here: Darrell once again has to twist an argument to squeeze something into it. Darrell quoted Vines in the first affirmative to show that the terms giving and receiving were terms of debit and credit used euphemistically. Vine's teaches that the literal application is the gift itself. The literal application of Paul's support was between the Philippian church and Paul himself. No one else participated between these two entities. If they did, the scriptures are silent on this matter, and silence does not authorize.
Darrell wrote: Carey, if you are in this debate for the sole purpose of winning, then why bother?
Carey here: Darrell, I am NOT (emp-cs) in the debate to win. I have an opportunity to teach what I consider the truth to a group of souls who may not know these things. Many, like yourself, have closed all communication with what you call the "anti's". You are unwilling to even give them a fair hearing. I seem to have heard that from somewhere in the past. [Darrell has made this charge several times].
If souls can learn the truth, this debate is worth all the effort that goes into it. How you treat me makes no difference at all. How you treat God's word is what really matters.
Darrell wrote: I sincerely want to learn the truth if I am in error, and I want to show you the truth if I know it.
Carey here: Then why resort to name calling and your sophistry? Yes, the truth hurts, but it only hurts those who are pricked in the heart with it. Your sophistry suggest that you have been hurt and rather than repent of your error, you justify your own conscience by calling me evil names (Isa 5:20).
Darrell wrote: You remind me of the destructive critic. Every time the Bible vindicates itself the critic just changes his method of form criticism. I will never understand why he will [not] just abandon his error and get on board with the truth.
Carey here: You may be describing me, but I see that you are describing yourself. My criteria for my position is grounded in truth by book, chapter, and verse, where your position is grounded upon the silence of scripture and assumption. My friend, it is you who needs to get on board with the truth.
Darrell wrote: Secondly, what did Paul say? He said Philippi was the "only" church working with him at that time, in the "giving and receiving" department,
Carey here: Thank you! Thank you! Thank you!
but he was "robbing other churches" by taking wages from them. I will stand here on Paul's inspired scholarship!
Carey here: Do you see how Darrell twists the scriptures to get them to say what he wants them to say? Darrell uses a statement from a different book, written at a different time, referencing a different situation, written to a different group of Christians, and combines unrelated thoughts to say that this "might" be authorization for what he believes.
Every denomination in the world today exists upon the same type of principles, logic, and reasoning. As we have opportunity, we teach these folks that God's word is authoritative ONLY (emp-cs) when used properly.
Darrell wrote: Carey, you know it went directly to Paul.
Carey here: I gave you the scriptures to support it. I believe the scriptures, and I have faith that the scriptures do not lie. By faith I know that the support went directly to Paul.
Darrell wrote: Would you argue that 2 Corinthians 8:1-14 teaches that the collection went to the church in Jerusalem before it was distributed to the saints?
Carey here: No, I would not. Nothing in the passage even suggests such a thing. We do not know how it was distributed, unless we revert back to Acts 4 to see that money was laid at the apostle's feet for this purpose.
Darrell wrote: Many NI's would make that argument,
Carey here: I do not categorize myself as being a NI. I am a Christian and only a Christian. Besides, I have never heard this argument you are presenting here, (that I can remember).
Darrell wrote: but it is based on inference. The same inference you must use to find a specific pattern in II Cor. 11:8. Phil. 2:15 is not dealing with the support aspect of evangelism.
Carey here: One must take everything that God gives us on a particular subject and verify through study what our actions can be in regard to that subject. Phil 4:15 is certainly one of those passages that describe the transfer of funds, and Paul himself said "that at the first preaching of the Gospel". No inference is necessary. This was describing evangelism and the support of evangelism. That is, unless preaching the gospel and evangelism are two different things?
Darrel wrote: Phil. 2:10 does not specifically state that Paul received these funds directly without going through the church in Corinth. Again I could infer the same from II Cor. 8:1-14. The matter upon which we are focused in debate is the action of one congregation fellowshipping into "giving and receiving" with a preacher in the field. Philippians 4:15 directly teaches that this method is authorized by Christ.
Carey here: Thank you! And a thousand times, Thank you! You now admit that the method authorized by Christ is "one congregation fellowshipping into giving and receiving with a preacher in the field. Philippians 4:15" Rest assured that I would be using this similar argument in our second debate.
Darrell wrote: The argument from Acts 15 is valid. The same arguments can be made from other places. There is no need for these arguments because Philippians 4:15-16 is too clear. Philippi was Paul's sponsoring congregation. They were the "only" congregation to fellowship with Paul into "giving and receiving." Remember friends, Carey made the word only" the meat of his argument, then he abandoned it when it turned against him.
Carey here: I have not abandoned this argument. Philippi did sponsor and support Paul by giving and receiving. Nothing in the passage suggests any other local churches participated in this practice. Darrell himself emphasized the word "only" in his statement above.
Darrell wrote: Why prove a thing from fifty different arguments.
Carey here: Good point! I have taught that all we need is one verse to authorize a practice. Failure to respect God's law will result in adding, removing, binding, and loosing. This is rebellion towards God.
Darrell wrote: I have proved congregations may work together and send a missionary's funds to one congregation, which will then send those funds to the missionary. This was the arrangement used by Paul when he departed from Philippi and while he was laboring in the city of Corinth.
Carey here: Darrell has reasoned it by twisting scripture, using unrelated passages, and offering suggestions of "it may be the case". Darrell has not offered one scripture that shows an example of any church sending their funds to another church for evangelism purposes. Darrell has NOT (emp-cs) proved it with Bible authority.
The scriptures deal with what a church may do with it's finances and funds (contribution). Sending to another church for that church to do an authorized work is not found in the scriptures, therefore it is unauthorized.
Darrell wrote: Carey, when you see the mosaic which is Christ's church, then you will be able to see beyond the haze of phantom patterns.
Carey here: If I can find it in THE BOOK (BIBLE), it is not a phantom pattern. A phantom pattern is one that is not clearly specified by scripture and introduced by mortal man. The sponsoring church arrangement came from the denominations and it originated with man. The only haze is in the unwillingness of Darrell to see the truth, and put away those things which are not authorized in scripture.
Darrell wrote: Men may not bind where God has not bound. (Rev. 22:18-19; Matt. 15:9).
Carey here: Darrell, many readers of this debate are familiar with the Marriage Divorce and Remarriage discussion. The main argument of those who would pervert the scriptures is that "men may not bind where God has not bound". The supporters of the truth on that subject read every passage and see what God had to say on the entire subject. When we teach the truth, those opposed will charge the faithful with teaching the "doctrines of demons". If we speak as the oracles of God, we do not have liberty to add or subtract from the holy inspired word of God.
Those things spoken in scripture bind us. If I repeat the scripture, I am not guilty of binding. If, on the other hand, the scriptures bind us, then anyone who adds a practice or ignores certain passages are guilty of loosing where God has not loosed.
This concludes the affirmative and negative arguments; I commend the readers for their interest to read and I pray that they did so with open, honest hearts. I pray that everyone on both sides of this issue will pray about these matters and determine to do God's will, God's way. May the Lord bless you all.
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